October 8th, 2008
03:11 PM ET
9 years ago

New York Times calls McCain campaign 'appalling'

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/08/art.nytimes.gi.jpg caption="The New York Times issued a critical assessment of McCain's campaign."](CNN) - The New York Times issued a renewed scolding of John McCain in a sharply-worded editorialWednesday morning, the latest salvo in the ongoing back-and-forth between the paper of record and the Arizona senator's White House bid.

"Senator John McCain and Gov. Sarah Palin have been running one of the most appalling campaigns we can remember," the Tuesday editorial said. "They have gone far beyond the usual fare of quotes taken out of context and distortions of an opponent’s record — into the dark territory of race-baiting and xenophobia. Senator Barack Obama has taken some cheap shots at Mr. McCain, but there is no comparison."

Those comments come two weeks after senior McCain advisors derided the New York Times, calling the news outlet "an Obama advocacy organization" in response to an article in the paper that reported McCain campaign manager Rick Davis was still profiting from failed mortgage giant Freddie Mac.

The Times, McCain spokesman Michael Goldfarb said then, “obscures its true intentions — to undermine the candidacy of John McCain and boost the candidacy of Barack Obama — under the cloak of objective journalism.”

Top McCain adviser Steve Schmidt also weighed in on the paper that endorsed McCain's primary bid, saying it is “150 percent in the tank” for Obama - a statement that drew a defiant response from managing editor Bill Keller, who said the paper is "is committed to covering the candidates fully, fairly and aggressively."

The McCain campaign appeared to make its peace with the paper over the weekend, when aides to the Arizona senator and Palin herself both highlighted a Times story that investigated the relationship between Obama and 1960's radical William Ayers. That article, published October 3, concluded Obama has played down the extent of his relationship with the Weather Underground founder, but concludes the two "do not appear to have been close."

But in its blistering editorial Wednesday, the paper's editors criticized the campaign and the Alaska governor for suggesting Obama is "palling around with terrorists," saying that Palin is implying that "Mr. Obama is right now a close friend of Mr. Ayers — and sympathetic to the violent overthrow of the government."

“We certainly expected better from Mr. McCain, who once showed withering contempt for win-at-any-cost politics," the editorial says.

Earlier: Cindy McCain says Obama running 'dirtiest campaign' ever

soundoff (212 Responses)
  1. ltd1974



    October 8, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  2. USAF Staff Sergeant

    "Appalling" only starts to describe the McCain campaign. This past month especially has been the most vile, lie filled, ridiculous excuse for a campaign.

    McCain already lost, and I guess he's planning on going down in a spiral of self destruction.

    October 8, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  3. Kentucky

    I couldn't agree more with the New York Times. Every American should be offended at half the things McCain has said. He knows he's in a hole and wants to do whatever it takes, at anyone's expense, to change the momentum. I don't understand how there are still independent voters out there. Its a night and day choice. One will lead us further in debt and not prepare us for the future...the other will put the US back on the map and is willing to listen to all options before jumping to any conclusions. This is a democracy, Mr. McCain, not a dictatorship.

    October 8, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  4. DR

    NY Times need to do a full investigation on Sarah Palin, too. If she can call herself a christian why will she be willing to spread lies, and hate. Christian don't do that. McCain's rallies are getting to be very radical that it's scary when you hear there audiences saying, "kill him", "terriost" or a lawman labeling a candidate because of his middle name but McCain doesn't care.

    October 8, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  5. Teddy

    for the sake of his campaign i wish McCain would kick Palin to curb. She's dead weight and dragging the ticket down.

    October 8, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  6. Walt, Belton,TX

    Coming from the trash dump known as "all the news fit to print and then everything else", I'd take this as an endorsement.

    October 8, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  7. scott

    McCain & Palin are desparate.......and non-presidential

    October 8, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  8. Bruce

    hehe "That One" 08 🙂

    I cant wait for them to start calling the Times a paper filled with lies and totally in it for Obama, especially after they just quoted an article the times did. Course they picked out words that best suited them...

    this election is like watching a train wreck, you wana look away but ya just cant.

    oh well,

    October 8, 2008 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  9. joe

    why isn't appalling that barack obama sat in a church for 20 years that spewed hatred?

    why isn't it appalling that one of barack obama's first fundraising events was at the house of a terrorist?

    why isn't it appalling that barack obama was is in the top 3 in terms of dollars received from fannie and freddie mac and that he/the dems were the ones who pushed for loans to risky borrowers who should have had no business getting loans in the first place? yes, that is why our economy is in this mess!

    get out of your left leaning ivory tower and be alittle more balanced in your reporting.

    October 8, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  10. Rob indetroit

    "You Betcha-I'am voting for that one"


    October 8, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  11. mary mt

    New york time should talk about it last week. Why it take so long ....

    October 8, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |


    October 8, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  13. tulsa


    Well, let's see..... maybe when your candidates decided to use the NYT OUT OF CONTEXT to make hate part of their strategy.

    October 8, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  14. Josh from DC

    The McCain campaign has nothing left. they are running on fumes....and boy does it stink.

    OBAMA '08

    October 8, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  15. Yasriel

    Have you seen the latest Gallup Poll,

    "That One" is up 52%
    "Angry One" is down 41%


    Obama/Biden '08

    October 8, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  16. mary b

    The paper is one sided and has been right from the start....obama could kill someone right in front of them and would say it was someone else, or they never saw it. I don't care what side a paper is on, but there is no need to state their views over and over...keep it to themselves. They have been biased, just like msnbc, cnn cbs......ayers and obama are a disgrace, ayers had obama work with him for seven years with the radical ACORN...getting voter registration no matter if people are dead or alive...obama pushed to get the mortgages for minorities through ACORN...no verification of social security, no verificaton of job, no money down........he knew these loans would come back......but that is still what he pushed. The paper lets it slide also about obama and all the money he received from fannie mae and freddie mac, and aig

    October 8, 2008 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  17. jamessye

    your darn right...lol

    Barack Hussein Obama in 08. They can try to make all the insinuations that they want. We know he puts America first!

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  18. Stacy

    I used to have a high amount of respect of Senator McCain but he has sunk so low and is so desparate to win. He is not a man of honor and he does not put his country first. He puts himself first. He will reflect on this just like the Keating 5 and South Carolina primary and realize how dishonorable he is.

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  19. TVC

    McCain/Palin are done!!!!!

    That One/Biden 08!!!!!!!!!!

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  20. PooDog

    "Maverick" is out. There's a NEW drinking game, "My friends!"

    That Girl for That One '08

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  21. Bad Change

    I find the NY Times appalling, they've been in the tank for Obama for a long time. Just like their smear campaign against McCain was fair back in June concerning a supposed affair...pot calling kettle black!!

    Annoy the media vote Mac/Palin!!

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  22. Lifelong Republican for Obama, Columbia, TN

    I have lost ALL RESPECT FOR JOHN MCCAIN! He is a loser and he should not become President!

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  23. Joan , Ontario

    Obama just gave one of his best speeches since the primaries at a rally in Indianna. He was confident, presidential, intelligent, thoughtful and zeroed in on all of the pertinent topics especially the economy. After his win last night and his ability to give wonderful, motivating , intelligent speeches like this, it will take a lot more than petty attack ads from McCain's campaign to try and overtake him. Right now he seems presidential and they seem desperate

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  24. Sammy

    Oh its just the same 'attack the media' argument. It's gotten old.

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  25. Scott in Atlanta

    That one!08

    October 8, 2008 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
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